Burn. Freeze. Zap. That about covers it.
MPOGD has a feature up which takes a good look at the Mages of World of Warcraft. If you're only somewhat familiar with them, it's a good introduction to what the class can do and the high-end gear they enjoy.
The mage class in World of Warcraft is one of the highest damage dealing classes, and depending on the circumstances, can often be THE highest. As with all classes in WoW, the talent point distribution determines the method and volume of damage dealt over time. Fire/ Arcane spec mages deal the best burst DPS, while a Frost build mage has better survivability over the long term, and will deal more damage in longer fights.
Read more at MPOGD.com.
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